|David Grossman and son, Uri, who was one of the last killed in the |
Lebanon War before a ceasefire was declared.
CHARLIE ROSE: You know, I’m fascinated by the release of the
documents from the Israeli government about the ‘73 war and how close it
was. You’re part of that conversation, you hear that conversation. It’s a
big topic in
. What is the -- it says how close it is always for Israel
tenacity of the Arabs.
DAVID GROSSMAN: Yes. This existential fear prevails all the time in
you see on the TV screen, you see a kind of military fist, iron fist. But
we see the palm of the hand and the fragility of
And, you know, in the book which is called "To the End of the Land" it
has this double meaning as well, yes.
CHARLIE ROSE: What does it mean, "To the End of the Land"?
DAVID GROSSMAN: First it means, Ora asks the Palestinian driver to
take her to the place where
ends. But also it echoes this option Israel
that terrifies us all the time, that there might be an end to this country,
which really freaks me out to think that after 62 years of independence,
sovereignty, having enormous strong army. Yet our existence is not
guaranteed, is not solid.
And at a certain moment when Ora and Avram, they spend on the top of
the mountain and they look around at the wonderful view of
Galilee, and she
tells him "Isn’t it always like that with
, that every encounter with Israel
it is also bidding farewell to it?" This double-ness exists all the time.
You know, if you read in an American paper that
plans its road America
plan for the years 2030, it sounds normal, yes, reasonable. No sane
Israeli will make plans for such a long time in advance. And I’ll tell
you, when I think of
20 or 30 years from now I feel a twinge in my Israel
heart as if I violated a taboo by allowing myself too much portion, a too
huge portion of future.
CHARLIE ROSE: Too optimistic in your assumption that it will be
DAVID GROSSMAN: Yes. And this must be corrected. This must be
changed. It’s impossible that we shall continue to live in this
And I believe that only peace will allow us to enjoy this sequence of
generation and having a solid feeling of future and also something that is
maybe hard to understand, but I will call it solidity of existence, of the
people who is rooted in its own land, who has fixed borders between him and
his neighbors until now 62 years
does not have fixed borders. Our Israel
borders all the time are receding, expanding.
It’s like someone who lives in a room that the walls are moving all
the time or the ground is shaking under his feet all the time. This cannot
go on like that forever. Only peace we’ll allow us in
to have a Israel
feeling of home, of real home, you know?
the Jewish people who never really felt at home in the world. This is our
tragedy. And we have
, and still it is not the home that we need and Israel
we deserve and we yearn to. Only peace will allow us to have home and
future and this solidity of existence.
CHARLIE ROSE: Can you afford to think about what
would be like Israel
if there was peace?
DAVID GROSSMAN: I think a lot about it, and I think that even
thinking about it is obligatory, because most Israelis and Palestinians,
they so deeply misbelieve in the option of peace that they despair of this
possibility at all. And I think it’s so necessary.
CHARLIE ROSE: You have to believe in it?
DAVID GROSSMAN: To believe in it, to insist on believing in that, to
make a kind of a massage to the reluctant consciousness, the terrified
consciousness. So we shall know what is the alternative and remember that
there is an alternative, that there’s not any divine decree of orders to
live by the sword all our life.